Comic actor and co-writer of out-there TV shows, Review with Myles Barlow , At Home with Julia, and (spot the odd one out) Home and Away, Phil Loyd seemingly appeared out of nowhere when he hit our TV screens in the first 2008 ABC series of Myles Barlow. Who was this ultra-conservative looking, blazer and fawn slacks wearer with the 70s 'Andrew Bolt' hair and highly original, satirical wit?
|The talented Mr. Loyd|
Phil Lloyd had been plugging away as a scriptwriter with Home and Away, the long-running Australian soapie by the sea series for years before he co-wrote Myles Barlow with with fellow writer, Trent O'Donnel. The premise of the show is ambitious and daring, yet simple in it's conception.
Lloyd, as deadpan fireside host Myles Barlow, reviews aspects of life via a series of sketches and applies star rating to such diverse experiences as murder, divorce, starting a cult, homelessness, freeloading and intergenerational dating. Allegedly Lloyd and O'Donnel got the idea for the show late one night at a party, when they found themselves rating a stain on a bed sheet. It's a clever, highly amusing series that won AFI (Australian Film Institute) Awards for two years running - Best Performance in a Comedy Series and Best Television Comedy Series.
Hijinks at The Lodge
In 2011, Phil Lloyd took another daring leap into the gluggy mire of television, by co-writing (with Amanda Bishop, Rick Kalowski) and starring in a new four part series about the personal life of Prime Minister Julia Guillard - At Home with Julia. Not an easy project by any stretch but gauranteed to get all eyes on the small screen. As displaced suburban hairdresser and PM's partner Tim Matheison, Loyd projects a funny but all too human perspective of a man in the shadows. It's a portrait loaded with a creeping pathos that some viewers have found 'over the line'.
Lloyd's edgy comedy has got him noticed. Although he may look like something that crept out of a conservative think tank, his retro style and quietly effective humour is strangely and refreshingly appealing. Along with that other Australian comedy innovator, Chris Lilley, there are interesting layers beneath the haha surface of the comedy. There's something going on...something about ourselves. Four Stars.